Gillian Gibbons is described as "a talented and able teacher ". A British schoolteacher has been arrested in Sudan accused of insulting Islam's Prophet, after she allowed her pupils to name a teddy bear Muhammad.
Colleagues of Gillian Gibbons, 54, from Liverpool, said she made an "innocent mistake" by letting the six and seven-year-olds choose the name. Ms Gibbons was arrested after several parents made complaints. A spokesman from the British Embassy in Sudan's capital, Khartoum, said it was unclear whether she had been charged. Embassy officials are expected to visit Ms Gibbons in custody later. "We are in contact with the authorities here and they have visited the teacher and she is in a good condition," an embassy spokesman said. The spokesman said the naming of the teddy happened months ago and was chosen by the children because it is a common name in the country. "This happened in September and the parents did not have a problem with it," he said. The BBC's correspondent Amber Henshaw said Ms Gibbons' punishment could be up to six months in jail, 40 lashes or a fine. The school has been closed until January for fear of reprisals. Fellow teachers at Khartoum's Unity High School told Reuters news agency they feared for Ms Gibbons' safety after receiving reports that men had started gathering outside the police station where she was being held. The school's director, Robert Boulos , said: "This is a very sensitive issue. We are very worried about her safety. They came up with eight names including Abdullah, Hassan and Muhammad
Robert Boulos Director of Unity High School "This was a completely innocent mistake. Miss Gibbons would have never wanted to insult Islam."